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For, Friday, July 21, 2017

Filmmaker Christopher Nolen has abandoned fantasy for the time being to take on a real-life period in European history, and it’s opening as a major summer movie, in IMAX no less. Talk about counter-programming.

“Dunkrik” (PG-13). The subject here is the famed evacuation of Dunkirk, France, after Allied soldiers found themselves surrounded by the German Army in 1940 during the early stages of World War II. Christopher Nolen (“The Dark Knight Trilogy,” “Inception”) wrote and directed with a cast that includes Kenneth Branagh, Mark Rylance, Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy, Jack Lowden and Harry Styles.

“Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” (PG-13). The latest visually ambitious sci-fi epic from writer-director Luc Besson (“The Fifth Element”) is based on a French comic book series set in the 28th century as two young agents (Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne) are assigned to a peaceful planet where a variety of species share knowledge and culture, but which is threatened by a malevolent presence. With Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Herbie Hancock and Rutger Hauer.


“Maudie” (PG-13). An arthritic woman (Sally Hawkins) with no prospects in 1930s Nova Scotia takes a housekeeping job, discovers a talent for painting and eventually marries her employer (Ethan Hawke). But to her surprise, she finds success in the art world, which takes her in unexpected directions in this true story of artist Maud Lewis.

“Girls Trip” (R). Four lifelong friends (Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall, Tiffany Haddish) travel to New Orleans for a music festival and let down their hair in this raunchy comedy. With Larenz Tate, Kate Walsh and cameos by Mariah Carey, Ne-Yo and more.